8:9 gone up to Assyria. Probably a reference to Hoshea’s submission to Assyria in his attempt to keep the power that he had seized following his murder of Pekah (7:11; 2 Kin. 15:30; 17:3). See Introduction: Date and Occasion.
wild donkey. Using a wordplay between the Hebrew for “wild donkey” and “Ephraim,” Hosea condemns Ephraim (Israel) for stubbornly rejecting the Lord’s company.